ROCKPORT, June 22, 2011—A woman who became Cary Medical Center’s “chief entertainment officer,” and, more formally, the director of volunteer services, has been selected as the Maine Hospital Association’s 2011 Caregiver of the Year.
Betty Walker was a single mother to three girls, including one with Down Syndrome, when she joined the team at Cary Medical Center as a receptionist in the Rehabilitation Services Department in 1986. From her first days, according to her nomination from hospital CEO Kris Doody, it was clear that she understood the power of humor and used it to improve the lives of the patients at the hospital. She formed a group of “Hill-Billie” women, known as the Hooters, who played the spoons, did crazy dances, sang, read poetry and entertained patients at the annual cancer patient/family/staff Christmas party. They also visited nursing home and hospital patients.
“Betty’s selection as 2011 Caregiver of the Year is an exa